Sunday 17 December 2017

IGB chief Phil Meaney hails rise in Derby betting

Holdem Spy, left, on his way to winning The Anglo Irish Invitation Race at Wimbledon Stadium. Photo credit: Alan Crowhurst/Getty Images
Holdem Spy, left, on his way to winning The Anglo Irish Invitation Race at Wimbledon Stadium. Photo credit: Alan Crowhurst/Getty Images
Michael Fortune

Michael Fortune

Apart from the high quality of the racing, the Tote Betting figures on the opening round of the Irish Derby showed a welcome substantial increase on last year's corresponding stage.

The overall increase in Tote betting on the two nights of the Derby was 14.53pc. All elements of Tote betting increased substantially, with the On Track betting up 11.27pc, while Inter Track showed an increase of 14.09pc.

Encouragingly, betting in the Internet Wagering Platform - which includes the Barking Buzz business - went soaring by 40.25pc.

Naturally, IGB chairman Phil Meaney was delighted with the figures, saying: "We could hardly have asked for better and hopefully it will continue for the remainder of the classic. Obviously the marketing work being done by Boylesports in their first year as sponsors is working very well."

Holdem bid

There was no word of any injury problems among the remaining 96 contenders and the scene is set for some terrific racing when the second round is staged on Thursday and Saturday.

There are six British challengers remaining in the classic and Darren Holmes, partner of trainer Carol Weatherall, reported all is well with Scottish Derby winner Holdem Spy, which is the shortest priced of the raiders.

Holdem Spy was having his first race since May 31 and Holmes said: "I will be very disappointed if he doesn't come on a lot from the race and we are hoping he will go on for a while yet in the classic.

"If he gets past this week's race then we will consider staying over in Ireland for the rest of his campaign.

"We will be calling it a day with him after the Derby and may only give him one more run, in the Night of Stars."

Holmes also has Holdem Hawk in the Derby but he was brought along "as we are as well having two as one running in it. He needs further and will be aiming for the Doncaster St Leger and the English St Leger".


JJ Fennelly and his mother-in-law Sheila Spillane enjoyed a super night at Curraheen Park on Saturday when they had a four-timer in the first-round heats of the Greyhound & Petworld A1 525.

The stake was actually oversubscribed and judging by Saturday's running, the prize has a fair chance of coming back to Killeagh.

The star of the show was Burgess Oscar, which clocked a sizzling 28.08 when winning by no less than 13 and a half lengths.

The other winners for the Fennelly/ Spillane team were Burgess Rumble 28.41, Burgess Four 28.62 and Whatasteup 28.75.

Irish Independent

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